Piling on Israel

On Monday, October 13, the British Parliament overwhelmingly passed a non-binding resolution to give diplomatic recognition to a Palestinian state. The New York Times reported that, “The vote was a symbolic but potent indication of how public opinion has shifted since the breakdown of American-sponsored peace negotiations and the conflict in Gaza this summer. Though the outcome of a parliamentary vote, 274 to 12, was not binding on the British government, the debate was the latest evidence of how support for Israeli policies, even among staunch allies of Israel, is giving way to more calibrated positions and in some cases frustrated expressions of opposition to Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s stance toward the Palestinians.” (New York Times)

Grahame Morris, the Labour Party lawmaker who promoted the resolution, said Britain had a “historic opportunity” to take “this small but symbolically important step” of recognition.“To make our recognition of Palestine dependent on Israel’s agreement would be to grant Israel a veto over Palestinian self-determination,” said Mr. Morris, who leads a group called Labour Friends of Palestine.

Mr. Morris is trying to take away Israel’s right to defend itself. What he calls a “veto over Palestinian self-determination” is necessary action that Israel must take if its survival is to be ensured. Short of a war determining the boundaries of a state (Europe in the aftermath of WWII comes to mind), the peaceful alternative is an agreed upon treaty, such as Scotland’s with the UK. Perhaps Mr. Morris thinks, for example, that Wales could include Birmingham, the UK’s second largest city, within its borders and declare itself independent from the United Kingdom. Would a British veto be out of line in that situation?

Richard Ottaway, a Conservative lawmaker and chairman of the House of Commons foreign affairs committee, is reportedly very angry at Israel’s behavior in recent months, the period when it defended itself against an onslaught of attacks from Gaza. He has now realized, “in truth, looking back over the past 20 years, that Israel has been slowly drifting away from world public opinion.”

Hasn’t public opinion been molded by oil money, BBC, and most other media outlets, to present Israel as the cause of the Palestinians’ problems, indeed the cause of all the problems of the entire region? Of course Israel is “drifting away” from those slanted notions, because they are totally incorrect. Israel is fighting, even desperately, to avoid being forced into a marriage of sorts with the Palestinian Arabs, who will not be satisfied with the “1967 borders” (the 1949 armistice line/Green Line), as attested to by the PLO and Hamas charters. Be it a more nationalistic-oriented movement (PLO) or a jihadist-oriented one (Hamas, Muslim Brotherhood, Islamic Jihad, Hizbollah), each of Israel’s adversaries follows a Plan of Stages to eventually take over the Jewish State.

Sweden’s Foreign Minister just declared its support for a State of Palestine, to be imposed on Israel, if necessary. Sweden’s empathy for the Palestinian Arabs is a big issue now because the country has been inundated by Arabs and politicians must play up to them to stay in power. Evidently, it’s the same case in Britain. France seems ready to play the same game, due to its large and increasingly powerful Muslim population.

The days (after 1967’s Six Day War) when Security Council resolutions 242 and 338 were the basis for negotiations between Israel and the Arabs are long gone. In the rush to give the Palestinians a state, Israel’s security counts for nothing. Witness the $5 billion-plus handouts which have just been promised to the Palestinians to “rebuild” Gaza. Is there a requirement for Hamas to disarm? Will it? Of course not. In a short time, Hamas will be in a position to again attack Israel – which will necessitate yet another bailout. And why not? Hamas considers itself the winner of the summer war because it survived to fight another day. And not only that – Israel is opening borders, allowing more materials to enter which have dual use (military/construction), not to mention that Hamas will line its coffers with part of the $5 billion. The Palestinian Authority, which is viewed as the “moderate” party for Israel to deal with, will also gain new millionaires from Western largesse.

Is this the time for Israel to stop building, to stop irritating President Obama and the Europeans, to stop the IDF from apprehending terrorists, to be quiet and cooperative? No, Israel will get no kudos from the world for its humanity and submissiveness. The war crimes charges that have been hurtled at Israel after our incredibly careful attacks in Gaza are proof of that.

Because weakness works against us, Israel must rely on its strength. For example, if an attack to stop Iran’s imminent nuclear weaponization is required, the IDF must be given the mission. The West doesn’t have the stomach to confront Iran, from all indications. Under no circumstances can we rely on the West to protect us from the jihadists, be they Arab or Iranian.

As Sweden and Britain have illustrated, the world’s politicians are entirely pragmatic and myopic, even as far as the future of their own countries is concerned. Few doubt that sharia (Muslim law) will be definitive in their countries in the relatively near future. Lest we forget, Israel didn’t make it to 5775 (Hebrew calendar) by depending on any other country than itself. Now is the time for our leaders to remember that there is never an appropriate time, according to public opinion and the diplomats, for Israel to protect itself.

The media has an agenda against Israel. This is not paranoia, because it is true. I urge you to read Matti Friedman’s seminal article, “An Insider’s Guide to the Most Important Story on Earth,” to gain an understanding of why Israel’s public policy seems so ineffectual. More than anything else, our image in the world is consciously being trashed by the ultra-liberal media overlords.

About the Author
Steve Kramer grew up in Atlantic City, graduated from Johns Hopkins in 1967, adopted the hippie lifestyle until 1973, then joined the family business for 15 years. Steve moved to Israel from Margate, NJ in 1991 with his family. He has written more than 1100 articles about Israel and Jews since making Aliyah. Steve and his wife Michal live in Kfar Saba.